When it comes to medications, Imodium is a widely used OTC. However, people who are consuming it, often have many questions in their minds. We have picked the most frequently asked queries and did a deep research to answer them. So, today we will tell you what is Imodium, what it is used for, how long does Imodium last, Imodium side effects and so on. So, let’s get started.
What Is Imodium And What It Is Used For?
Imodium (or loperamide hydrochloride) is a commonly used over-the-counter medication to treat diarrhea (also traveler’s diarrhea). It slows down a person’s gut movement, decreases bowel movements and makes sure that the stool is less watery.
What Does Imodium Do And How Does It Work?
When your intestines work normally, fluids and food easily pass from your stomach to small intestine and then to your colon. The cells that line up your small intestine absorb these fluids and other nutrients, which your body needs. However, sometimes these cells can become irritated and cannot absorb them properly. At this time, fluids and food move through colon quickly, resulting in diarrhea.
Imodium slows the pace of digestion so that a person’s small intestine has adequate time to absorb all the nutrients and fluids from the food he or she eats. It also reduces the quantity of stool in individuals who have ileostomy (re-routing the bowel via surgical opening in the stomach). Imodium come sin 2 forms:
- Generic form
How Long Does Imodium Last?
So, one frequently asked question by many consumers is none other than – how long does Imodium last. Well, Imodium lasts 2 hours or more.
Note: Imodium should not be given to children under 6 years unless directed by a doctor.
How Long Does Imodium Stay In Your System?
If you are an adult, you can take Imodium 4 times a day for 2 days until you feel relieved from diarrhea. It remains in your system for at least ½ day. However, this effect is not the same for all.
How Long Does Imodium Take To Wear Off?
Usually Imodium wears off within 8 hours. However, this duration might not be same for everyone. What you eat and drink also has its role. Unless required, avid using stool softener or laxative. You might unwittingly start on a bad cycle.
Imodium Dosage Information
Adults and kids of 12 years and above, who suffer chromic or acute diarrhea, the suggested loperamide dose is of 4 mg, followed by 2 mg dose after every loose bowel movement. Don’t go beyond 16 mg a day. Regular tablets must be taken with fluids. The rapid-dissolve tablets can be consumed without liquids.
Children between 6 and 12 years (weighing 10 – 20 kg) can use Imodium for chronic or acute diarrhea only if the doctor prescribes it. On the other hand, kids between the age 6 and 8, weighing more than 30 kg are required to take 2 mg, three times daily for the 1st day. If the diarrhea persists, Imodium can be given only after a loose bowel movement. The quantity of dose to be given also depends on the child’s weight. Contact your doctor before administering a kid.
Children between 2 and 5 years (weighing 10 – 20 kg) can use 1 mg of Imodium three times a day. If loperamide is in liquid form, use a measuring spoon or cup for accurate dosage.
Note: Loperamide pills are not for kids under 6 years. Stop using Imodium if you have hard or solid stools or you go 1 day without a proper bowel movement. If your diarrhea doesn’t improves within 48 hours, meet your doctor immediately.
Imodium Side Effects
Every medication comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. Hence, Imodium is no exception.
Common side effects of Imodium include:
- Bloating or stomach pain
- Worsening diarrhea
- Sore throat
- Burning sensation in eyes
- Infrequent or incomplete bowel movements
Rare side effects of Imodium include:
- Giant hives
- Paralysis of intestines
- Toxic megacolon
- Dry mouth
- Stomach cramps
- Erythema Multiforme
- Skin allergies
- Throwing up
Note: If you experience any of the side effects mentioned above, call FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (FREE).
When Shouldn’t You Use Imodium?
A person should not be using Imodium if:
- He or she is allergic to loperamide
- He or she has acute dysentery
- He or she has ulcer
- His or her stools are tarry, black or bloody
- His or her diarrhea has occurred due to an antibiotic
Note: If your doctor prescribes Imodium, and you happen to have mucus in stools, suffer from fever, use an antibiotic or there is a history if liver disorders, then inform him/her right away.
What To Do When You Are Using Imodium?
When you are using Imodium, make sure to drink plenty of water and natural liquids.
Can You Take Imodium While Pregnant?
It is still unknown if Imodium can harm an unborn baby. According to few studies, Loperamide can easily pass into the breast milk and can harm the nursing baby. Hence, it is important to tell your doctor if you are pregnant or planning to conceive or breastfeeding.
How Should You Take Imodium?
You need to take Imodium as prescribed by your doctor or check the instructions on the label. Never use Imodium in smaller or larger proportions than what has been recommended to you.
- Imodium should be taken with a glass of water
- Make sure to drink plenty of fluids when using this drug (to avoid dehydration)
Usually, Imodium is taken once the person experiences diarrhea. The initial dose is two times as much as the following doses. Don’t take Imodium more than three times in a 24 hour period without a doctor’s advice.
- Imodium chewable tablets should be chewed properly before swallowing.
- Shake the liquid (oral suspension) thoroughly before measuring a dose. Use a medicine cup or measuring spoon (not the regular tablespoon) to measure the dose. If you don’t have a measuring device, buy from a pharmacy.
The New Imodium A-D and Imodium A-D Liquids contain 2 different loperamide strengths. If you are switching from one brand to the other, ensure to follow the dosage instructions carefully. It might take a maximum of 48 hours for the symptoms to improve. Use Imodium, as directed by your doctor.
Where Should You Store Imodium?
Imodium should be stored at room temperature. Keep away from heat and moisture.
What Happens If You Miss An Imodium Dose?
Imodium is consumed when required. Hence, one might not be on a dosing schedule. However, if you have missed a dose, take it once you remember. However, skip it if it is already time for the next. Don’t take an extra dose just to make up the missed one.
What Happens If You Overdose?
If you overdose, you need to get emergency medical help or call 1-800-222-1222 FREE. Symptoms of Imodium overdose include drowsiness, less urination, stomach cramps, dizziness, vomiting or bloating.
What Should You Avoid?
Imodium might impair your reactions or thinking ability. Be very careful while doing activities that require alertness, especially driving. Avoid being dehydrated or overheated during hot weather. Follow your doctor’s advice on the type of liquids to drink when using Imodium.
What Other Medications Affect Imodium?
Prior using Imodium, tell your doctor about all the other medications you use, particularly saquinavir (Invirase). This includes over-the-counter, prescription, herbal products and vitamin supplements as well. Never start a new medicine without a doctor’s advice.